Now we welcome the Baggies to the Emirates

West Bromwich Albion Football Club was formed in 1878 and they have played at their current ground since 1900. They are known as The Baggies, The Throstles or WBA. They are based in the West Midlands with their main rivals being Aston Villa and Wolverhampton Wanderers.

In 1930/31 they won The Double of The FA Cup beating Birmingham 2-1 and winning Promotion – this version of The Double had not been managed before or since then.

In 1953/4 they came close to being the first team in the 20th century to win the recognized League and Cup double. They beat Preston North End 3-2 in the FA Cup but  finished as runners up to their bitter rivals Wolverhampton Wanderers in the league.

They have only been English Champions once after winning the League in 1919/20.

For the main part of their history The Baggies have played in the top flight of English Football, however when the FA formed the Premier League in 1992, Albion were down in the third tier (the current League One). Gary Megson was appointed as their manager in March 2000 and he led them to promotion into the Premier League in 2001/02.

Our home record against the Baggies –

Arsenal go into the game with a renewed level of confidence after winning their previous three home games against Bournemouth 3-0, FC Koln 3-1 and Doncaster Rovers 1-0.

My team = a shot in the dark.

Tony Pulis was appointed as their manager in January 2015 and in August of 2016 they were purchased by a Chinese investment group.  With Pulis as their manager, we should expect them to park a bus in front of goal and hope to beat us on a break away – in the past we have found these types of defences inordinately difficult to break down.

Let’s hope Gibbo has an off day

They have only beaten us at home once and that victory came back on September 25, 2010 so even with Pulis in charge, I fully expect us to come out as 2-0 winners.

Enjoy the game – but most of all keep the FAITH in our Gunners.

Written by GunnerN5.


124 Responses to Now we welcome the Baggies to the Emirates

  1. mickydidit89 says:


    “A shot in the dark” team 🙂

    I think that’s about as nailed on an XI as there could possibly be.

    Many thanks.

  2. chas says:

    Cheers, GN5.

    Your ‘shot in the dark’ team is exactly the same as that mentioned by LB the other day as the best possible team we might see today, so it must be good. 🙂
    (Mind you, he laid it out differently with only three in midfield and Ozil playing behind a front three of Laca, Sanchez and Rambo 🙂 ).

    MWG tonight.
    Up The Arse.

  3. mickydidit89 says:

    Morning All Chas 🙂

    I think the LB formation was set up to mock the baggies

    “There’s the gap in midfield to charge through, so come on at us if you think you’re hard enough”

  4. LB says:

    If it is not that team tonight we may all just as well give up.

    Terry Mancini………..when footballers had character, love it.

  5. mickydidit89 says:


    That is the reason I’d rather see teams/formations that individual bloggers would select, although tonight I am expecting some 11/11’s

  6. Rasp says:

    Morning all, thanks for another Histo-PM GN5 … I always learn something from your posts.

    I’m going to play devil’s advocate and say I expect at least one variation from the team … and also that I can feel AW swaying back towards a flat back 4 🙂

  7. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Thank you GN5 for another illuminating post. And thank you chas for finding that superb pic of the FAC Final programme – love the advert

    I don’t really care who plays as long as we see some exciting football and a victory.

  8. RC78 says:

    excellent post 🙂 I think that you have actually had a drink with AW and he gave you the starting line-up..

    I would rather play in a different set-up with 4-3-2-1 formation but AW seems to have adopted the 3-4-2-1 system

    It is going to be hard fight, physically and on set pieces. As a result, I would have rather played:

    Koli, Kos, Mustafi, Bellerin – Xhaka, El Neny, Ramsey – Sanchez, Lacazette – Giroud

    We need height and physicality

  9. Zee says:

    G’d Day, Gents,

    Hi GN5, like Rasper, I find the pre-matches by yourself and Raddy illuminating and always set the scene for the upcoming game.
    Many thnx, sir.

    I think the suggested/predicted team you have shown is pretty good, and with the current squad available is pretty much our best.

    My reservations about the players available tho is probably something for another day, as it will not find too much of an entente cordiale among the AA literati.

    In brief, there seems to be very little forward planning regarding the CBs, and has not been for some years. Per’s age cannot be a surprise to anyone, and yet …… it seems he has grown old without anyone noticing, and the so-called replacements such as Chambers and Holding have been tried and seemingly cast out. Not that that is a final coup de grace, and perhaps they will come good.

    I wonder if any of the coaches has noticed that Kozzer is also growing old? Replacements for him?

    Finally, Monreal has played pretty well at CB, but he is not a CB, either physically or by experience. Mustafi was apparently on his way out in this summer’s transfer window, until there was a last minute change of mind. Not reassuring!

    Oh, and has anyone noticed, Gabriel, the only muscular CB we had to deal with Costa, and could have, in the coming months, stood up to Lukaku and other CF behemoths, has been shipped out without any incoming replacement. Why?

    OK – that is for another day! 😀

  10. LB says:


    Often i pick two teams, one expect and one I would prefer. Whatever floats your boat as they say.

  11. mickydidit89 says:

    So that’ll be the ghastly contemporary 3-4-3 as opposed to the traditionalists 2-3-5 🙂

    Welcome back. Hope the mountain air has purified that mind of yours

  12. RC78 says:

    We are indeed short at CB – I think if we got 1 top CB, we would have been ok. I like
    – Koulibaly from Napoli;
    – Savic from Atletico;
    – Van Dijk from Southampton.

    Any of these three would fit in straight into our starting line-up

  13. RC78 says:

    I also think that AW should work towards turning Monreal and Chambers as DM. I think Monreal would excel there and that Chamers’ future lies in this position

  14. GunnerN5 says:

    Just tuning in for the rest of my morning.

    Pulis drills his teams on defensive positioning and tactics – he recognizes that size is important and buys big hoofers to fill the bill.

    It would be interesting to see his all time record against Arsenal – I may do some boring research to discover the details.

  15. GunnerN5 says:

    Welcome back Raddy, I look forward to your PM’s as I always enjoy reading them and it’s also great get back the surprise element by not knowing the PM details ahead of time.

  16. Big Raddy says:

    GN5 😀

    CB? We have 5/6 CB’s and I trust AW when he made the decision to sell Gabriel.

    Why write off BFG? Or for that matter, Chambers and Holding? I expect these two to have a fine future at AFC.

    Having Monreal as one of the 3 iallows us to play back 4 when Bellerin drops back and gives Kolasinac the possibility to augment the defence when needed.

    I am happy to have Monreal on the right but we struggled when he went central earlier in the season

  17. GunnerN5 says:

    Here is Tony Pulis’ all time record against Arsenal.
    P18, W5, D2, L11.

    Surprisingly his best record against another team was vs his current team WBA –
    P16, W11, D3, L2.

  18. RC78 says:

    Any thoughts on Monreal as DM?
    What about finally forging Chambers to play in one position, that position being DM?
    By the way, what happened to Zelalem and Bielik?

  19. mickydidit89 says:

    Oh God, I’m so bored of waiting. Need my Arsenal now. Blow the bloody whistle

  20. RC78 says:

    micky – I know what you mean…I hope AW plays El Neny and Giroud from the start today. what ‘s your prognosis?

    If we play Giroud and El Neny from the start, I am confident we will win 2-1. If not, I see an alarming 1-1

  21. Eddie says:

    an intelligent person is never bored micky.
    I, the intelligent one, spent the whole morning working out the new x265 movie formats. I got them playing in the end, but no sound. 3 hours later I noticed that I set speakers on mute 🙂

    I think we have a good chance tonight. 20 goals tonight and we might be within a chance of winning the league in May

  22. mickydidit89 says:

    My wife sometimes think I stay married because I could never work the telly by myself 🙂
    Mmmm, I’m going for about 6-0
    1-0 and I storm something

  23. Zee says:

    BR @ 1:06

    I presume you were responding to my comment re the lack of forward planning for replacing/improving the CBs – not that you bothered with the courtesy of acknowledging me. Now there’s a surprise.

    The key part of my comment related to the necessity for forward planning to replace ageing or unwanted players.

    So allow me to elaborate. Blow me down — Per will be disappointed that his repeated message to the fans that he intends to retire at the end of the season, and does not expect to play more than a few games this season has not got through.

    Let me help — PER HAS ANNOUNCED HE IS RETIRING SOON — that has nothing to do with me or anyone else ‘writing him off’ – it’s his own decision.

    As for Kozzer — how old is he? He is 32 y.o., only 1 year younger than Per, and suffers from a chronic leg problem which at his age will only get worse. What do we do when the best CB we have had for years hangs up his boots too?

    Writing off Chambers and Holding? Who said anything about writing them off either? Chambers was slated to be sold last July/August – but was injured playing for the U23s and that possibility fell through.

    How many times has Chambers played for Arsenal this season?
    The answer is once against Doncaster – so that’s 45 mins out of 7 games — 45 mins out of a possible 630 mins. Write him off? That seems to be Wenger’s doing.

    How many times has Holding played this season?
    The answer is 4 times out of 7. Much better than Chambers, but he is still not getting the games he deserves, in my opinion, after being humiliated by being subbed early in the opening game at Leicester, and then dropped for the next game to be replaced by two left backs at CB. Ask Mr Wenger – not me.

    As it happens I feel sorry for the two of them, and said in my original comment that I thought they may still come good, despite what has happened so far this season.

    And as for Gabriel? Who wrote him off? Not me. Again ask Wenger why he was dumped.

    You have over the years always made me feel so welcome BR!!

  24. Big Raddy says:

    Zee. I am happy to have done so.

  25. Eddie says:

    micky – valid reason to stay married, at least you have one, many people don’t

    6 nil, coming from where? Ollie or wantaway Chilean, or the other French lump?

  26. Eddie says:

    just checked Perez, on loan hallelujah. And Park or Miyachi – I still am not convinced they exist

  27. Eddie says:

    Prince Harry and Trudeau’s photographer are lookalikes. Really?

  28. mickydidit89 says:

    ha ha we failed 10/11

    Cech, Koscielny, Mustafi, Monreal,Bellerin, Xhaka, Elneny, Kolasinac, Ramsey, Sanchez, Lacazette,

    Subs: Ospina, Mertesacker, Wilshere, Ozil, Giroud, Walcott, Maitland-Niles

  29. mickydidit89 says:

    Gibbs plays

  30. Big Raddy says:

    Strange to see Ozil on the bench for a home game, he cannot be 100% fit.

    And Iwobi not even on the bench

  31. Evening everyone, I’m joining you on the sofa for this game, come on Arsenal

  32. Looking forward to seeing how Ramsey does further forward 😉

  33. Rasp says:

    I was right … I thought Elneny would start 😜

  34. GoonerB says:

    Just back, quick dinner and sit and watch. Many thanks for the post GN5, I do like your style. Anyway, talk later COYRRG’s.

    Ant’s get here there and everywhere Ant 🙂

  35. Big Raddy says:

    Well, if you are all here who is at the Emirates?

  36. GoonerB says:

    The refs a homer 😁

  37. 😃😃😃😃😃😃😃😃😃😃

  38. mickydidit89 says:

    One 🙂

  39. GoonerB says:

    That’ll do. 5 points for my dream team……and arsenal 1-0 up to boot 😊

  40. Big Raddy says:

    GB. You are right. WBA are playing against 12 men.

    Makes a change

    Superb free kick by Sanchez👟⚽️

  41. Eddie says:

    look at Ramsey, what a terrific player
    And this year is going to be the best year for him and us, as usual contract ending in 2 years

  42. What a clearance from Monreal

  43. Rasp says:

    Gibbs playing like a man with a point to prove

  44. GoonerB says:

    We go 1-0 up and start playing like it is a training game with everyone looking too chilled out and relaxed and with no urgency. Then the passes start to get casual as well. It is hard to disagree with the opinions of some that the mental attitude if the team is not of the highest standard thst is expected at this level and our club.

  45. mickydidit89 says:

    Just the one. Storming remains an option.

  46. GoonerB says:

    Happy to be leading but we dont deserve a lead. Need to pull our socks up.

  47. Rasp says:

    We’ve been lucky not to concede I agree … some sloppy passing from midfield

  48. Zee says:


    I know I can rely on you to help me out here.
    There have been so many sideways and attacking passes towards the goal on the left of my screen, so that’s OK — but how come our defenders are trying to clout the ball back to our goal on the right of my screen.

    Wait – their GK on the left looks awfully like Cech.

    No I’m confused — which direction are we playing? 🙂

  49. Big Raddy says:

    Agree with all of you but it made for an exciting half. Who would have thought a Pulis team could be so entertaining

    Our midfield disappeared and Xhaka looks woefully out of form. Can see JW getting some game time

  50. Zee says:

    Not the best display so far, with even short passes going astray, but I think Sanchez and La Caz could become formidable as they bed in with each other.

    Credit to AW for getting Kolasinac in the summer. He is formidable!

  51. Rasp says:

    See what I said about the cones last PL game?

  52. Rasp says:

    Montreal motm so far 😳

  53. mickydidit89 says:

    Two. Storming cancelled 🙂

  54. GoonerB says:

    Yes see. Lots of possession but lots of sideways and back passing and slowing the game down. I think rasp mentioned it the other day but we seem to lack the courage to move the ball forwards at the risk of losing possession. The irony is we often get pressed into losing it anyway. One of the reasons I am a massive jack fan. He always tries to get us moving forwards on the front foot when he can and does it quickly when the moment arises so the opposition can’t organise and line up to face us. Having said that we just got a penalty as I write on phone and………2-0……..we have been brilliant 😁

  55. GoonerB says:

    Sorry that was yes zee not yes see you see zee

  56. Big Raddy says:

    Needed that.

    Agree about Monreal

  57. GoonerB says:

    Looking sharper last 10 mins

  58. Zee says:

    Yez, I zee, GB, you see, I get called sea as in ‘all at’ when peeps meanz zee, you see.

    But thanx for name checking the Rasperooney as he does mention the cones and back passing every other comment — but he is allowed, as I like him.

    Sez me, see. 🙂

  59. GoonerB says:

    Arsene really doesn’t know what he is doing. Taking off one of my dream team players when he is on a hat trick…..wenger out.

  60. mickydidit89 says:

    we want six
    we want six

  61. Zee says:

    That is shocking GB. I agree with you.

    [What are you talking about – in case someone asks me?] 🙂

  62. Rasp says:

    Much better second half

  63. GoonerB says:

    No idea zee

  64. Big Raddy says:

    We were very good in the second half.

    Much to discuss about the game (in the morning)

  65. Rasp says:

    Another game when we play well without Ozil …. just saying 🙄🙄

  66. LB says:

    Disagree with that one Rasp, from my seat, the balance looked so much better when Ozil came on.

  67. Gööner In Exile says:

    “but we seem to lack the courage to move the ball forwards at the risk of losing possession. The irony is we often get pressed into losing it anyway. One of the reasons I am a massive jack fan. He always tries to get us moving forwards on the front foot”

    Does this need explaining? for me it’s obvious what happens.

    Average performance but pleasing result….form of champions 😉

  68. Gööner In Exile says:

    What we actually did was play ok when only one of Ozil and Alexis was on the pitch, but then I don’t think we played particularly well all game. But better than say Liverpool away. 🙂

  69. LB says:

    A Xhaka/Elneny midfield partnership would work well against a team that come onto us but West Brom, really, whats the point?

    Ozil would have been the best option but Wilshere would have worked well; as GB said above, he would have driven into the box, something that Xhaka and Elneny cannot do at all which is one of the reasons that there was so much sideways passing.

    Also as GB says above (I must stop doing this) Arsenal looked so much better in the last 10 minutes.

    Bullet points GB ……could be the way forward?

  70. LB says:

    “Does this need explaining? for me it’s obvious what happens.”

    Sorry GIE I must be a bit thick as I do need it explaining?

  71. GoonerB says:

    The form of champions GIE? I do hope so.

    LB, I always set out to do bullet points but get taken over by an evil gremlin with verbal diarrhea that hides in my computer.

  72. Gööner In Exile says:

    Form of champions was tongue firmly in cheek, it’s that horrible cliche that to win titles you have to win ugly sometimes.

    LB I think play stops going forward when the players are inhibited and I am afraid playing at home can do that. We get the mooing heard demanding a shot no matter how far out it is, and we get groans when there are misplaced forward passes and eventually some players stop going forward. I can think of two players who don’t stop playing the right way but get a lot of moans and groans and become target of the ire, but they are doing the right thing in continuing to play forward and do show bravery,lesser men stat to go sideways so they aren’t the man giving the ball away.

    Jack has love of the crowd so he doesn’t suffer anywhere near he same criticism and therefore continues to play forward at every opportunity.

    From last night I can think of one clear example where the team suddenly popped into gear and the ball moved forward very quickly, it started when Alexis with back to goal and under pressure controlled a high ball immaculately, met with a large round of applause, he fed the ball to Rambo, who played backwards but sharply the next pass was forward with pace inhected into the play and we continued, the crowd was stil applauding the team moved the ball quickly.

    I’ve been saying it for years but I seriously think until the groans for misplaced forward passes disappear or we have players of the character of Rambo and Ozil who continue to play forward no matter how the fans are reacting and no matter how many times the move breaks down.

    Someone spoke about pass stats on radio once, he talked about a player coming off and asking manager why he was subbed he hadn’t given the ball away, to which the manager replied as the number 10 I expect you to give the ball away, it’s easy to have 100% completion if every pass is sideways.

  73. mickydidit89 says:

    I thought it was all a bit boring

    So, what can I stick up. Thinks….

  74. chas says:

    Beware very bad language.

  75. chas says:

  76. mickydidit89 says:

    I could not possibly stick up anything of the quality in those two vids

    Great work, Chas

  77. chas says:

  78. Rasp says:

    Morning all, GiE, I made the point the other day that we should not always consider a high pass completion percentage as a good thing as it can show a lack of ambition when going forward. L

    LB, I agree that Ozil looked good when he came on, but that is because the mindset of a player who has come on from the bench is often quite different. In recent games, there have been times when Ozil has reminded me of Hleb a bit. He is a brilliant player, I’d just like him to be a bit more adventurous at times.

  79. Eddie says:

    yeah, what is it with Elnany and Xhaka and 6 yard box?? They charge at it like raging bulls and as soon as they are a yard away from it they start sideways and backward passes. It is sooo annoying and disappointing. Perhaps they are under orders to stop, look around and pass to a better placed player?

  80. LB says:

    Hleb and Ozil in the same sentence! Wash your mouth out with soap 🙂

  81. Rasp says:

    🙂 …. you know what I mean then 🙂

  82. Gööner In Exile says:

    In Ozils defence he can finish, and does try to finish when best placed to do so.

    Hleb would try and square it 2 yards out from an open goal.

  83. Gööner In Exile says:

    I’m now trying to think of the game where one of our forwards tried everything possible not to score when through one on one. He made such a pigs ear of it but still somehow scored, it may have been Hleb or Arshavin, maybe even Bendtner. Anyone have a stab at game and goal I’m thinking of?

    Actually may have been Chamakh or Adebayor.

  84. Gööner In Exile says:

    Rasp on the sideways thing I think it is due to when we get stretched. What we did well against Chavs was move ball through lines when attacking, and that was mainly because Rambo was a lot closer to the Xhaka and Iwobi came short for the ball, we performed some neat triangles tat then released it forward.

    I think last night he was a little guilty of making more distance between himself and Xhaka and Elneny, and those two didn’t necessarily decide who was going to be the bridge between HM and AM, and so we ended up with going sideways rather than force a ball up to the forwards.

  85. Rasp says:

    That all makes sense GiE. I had a hunch that Elneny would start the game. He never does much wrong, although there were a few stray passes in the first half, and I like the fact that he is always moving, always makes himself available for the ball and generally moves play on quickly … a little like Arteta used to.

  86. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    chas. Superb work this morning.

    I thought the first half when WBA attacked us and created so many chances was exciting. It was inevitable, given the amount of running WBA did in the first 60 minutes that the latter stages of the game would allow AFC both space and possession.

    I like that we appear to be more balanced with Kolasinac/ Monreal on the left which allows Sanchez to cut inside. Also, Bellerin seems to have rediscovered his mojo.

    Best moment was Monreal’s superb goal-line clearance

  87. LBG says:

    “as a number 10 I expect you to give the ball away. It is easy to have 100% completion of every pass is sideways”
    Even if it wasn’t your own quote, I think I love you!
    This is the fundamental error made by Wenger teams in the last 10+ years and one that has been compounded year on year as “confidence” in dynamic forward passing (and moving) has diminished. This is also why we need a fit, injury free Jack Wilshere back and firing on all cylinders.

  88. Big Raddy says:

    I like JW but have concerns. He has yet to truly influence a game. Before his injury he struggled at B’mouth though he was playing in an average team.

    If all our MF’s are fit my order of preference is:


  89. Rasp says:

    TH14 asked the question whether Ramsey and Ozil can play effectively together in his post match analysis yesterday. We are seeing a more effective Ramsey without Ozil. I don’t include the period when Ozil came on because as GiE (or was it LB) pointed out, WB were tiring and we pretty much had things all our own way in the last 20 minutes.

  90. Rasp says:

    Morning Raddy … but which pairings would you rate in order of your preference? 🙂

  91. Zee says:

    Good Morning each. 😉

    Great stuff, GIE, and for what it is worth I hope your computer gremlins carry on carrying on and make you expand your thought processes. 😀

    As far as last night’s game went, and as is frequenty the case, I found myself delighted with the goals and the winning points to keep us within sniffing distance of the top two clubs, and yet a treacherous doubt keeps crawling up my spine, telling me -we were a bit lucky – if the Mustafi penalty had been given and if WB took their other chances in the first half we would have been conducting a wake this morning’ — so I say to the doubter inhabiting my cranium, go away and leave me to enjoy the victory.

    The fact is tho, that we will not always get the breaks we had last night with some strange refereeing decisions and a better or luckier team than West Brom would turn us over.

    There is a shakiness to the team that all but the most one-eyed optimist can see. It stems from the back with our CBs often being bypassed and over-run because the central midfield is still lacking the defensive midfield anchor that we have needed for many seasons now.

    Xhaka is skilful and has a great cross field passing ability, but his short passing is not of the same calibre. He cannot tackle for toffee and he is definitely in the Shire Pony league in terms of speed.
    Central midfield anchor man? Don’t see it.

    Rambo is anything but a midfield anchorman. He runs miles and miles in a spirited all action – cover every blade of grass, style that is the antithesis of a ‘stay back, cover the CBs’ type of player, and more power to his elbow for the never say die temperament he brings to his game.

    Until that is ‘fixed’ the central midfield will let down the CBs, of whom last night the best of the trio was a converted left back. That cannot be right.

    That said, I enjoyed the game last night. The uncertainty in sport is a big draw for fans of my ilk. Of course I want the Arsenal to win, but overpowering the opposition can bring satisfaction for the win, but can be boring when the result is not in doubt.

    No – last night the result in the first half was always in doubt. With a disallowed penalty, and 2 or 3 other chances going begging, WBA could have gone in at half time 3 goals up. That would really have changed the way the 2nd half developed.

    Then in the second half, having survived all the traumas and near things caused by an energetic and hard pressing WBA, the front line boys decided to play.
    Sanchez was his usual energetic and zingy self, and sometime annoying self too, with his mazy pointless dribbles and misplaced passes. La Caz looked the classy goal poaching player we have needed, and demonstrated that with his acute anticipation to put Sanchez’ rebound from the bar into the net, and generally gave WBA a second half of anxiety resulting in heavy footed tackles the could have seen them down to 10 men for repeatedly targeting both Sanchez and out goal scorer.

    It would be remiss of me to fail to mention our human tank Sead who looked immense throughout, and as I said, I thoroughly enjoyed not just the goals and the points won, but the uncertainty in the game and the way the Arsenal worked their way around early problems and in the end won comfortably.

  92. Zee says:

    My personal ratings for the game is as follows:

    Cech 7 – Belli 6 – Kozzer 6 – Mustafi 5 – Monreal 8 * – Elneny 6 – Xhaka 5 – Kolasinac 6 – Rambo 6 – Sanchez 7 – La Caz 7

    Subs: Maitland Niles (??) – Giroud (??)

  93. RC78 says:

    Ramsey is better in a higher position and he is better overall than Ozil in this position because he puts in a bigger shift in terms of defensive contribution. He does not create as many chances though but he does provide more threats inside the box and right at the edge with his runs and his willingness to take shots at the edge of the box. Also when he loses the ball that high up the pitch, it does not create a dangerous situation. Ultimately, I think that Ramsey shall play higher up ahead of Ozil UNLESS Ozil decides to put in more defensive efforts.

    In a 3-4-2-1, our best line up is:
    Cech – Mustafi, Kos, Monreal – Bellerin, Xhaka, El Neny, Koli – Ramsey, Sanchez – Lacaz

    But ultimately, I really feel that our best line up (currently will all injuries) would be in a 4-3-2-1 with:

    Cech – Bellerin, Mustafi, Kos, Koli – Xhaka, Monreal, El Neny – Ramsey, Sanchez – Lacazette

    Yes yes – Monreal as DM because I think he can do great there.

  94. Red Arnie says:

    Thanks, GN5, and sorry, cannot come here much at all.

    Happy with 2-0, 3-0 would have been better and more deserved. My MoTM was Monreal.

  95. LB says:

    This made me laugh……..

    “he is definitely in the Shire Pony league in terms of speed” (Zee)

    There seems such an easy solution to me: play the one player who can shield the defence — Elneny and then you can have Ramsey and Ozil ahead doing their attacking thing.

  96. Red Arnie says:

    Truth be said, I was very nervous about this game. (a) Pubis busload (b) no ROFL during the weekend, and rarely do you find a week without one in the PL

  97. LB says:

    That really is a top drawer summary Mr Z and agree totally with the ratings.

  98. Rasp says:

    Shame it’s a bit too late to use it …… we could have stolen it for a post 🙄

  99. chas says:

    I’m not sure that with playing three at the back, all should be regarded as centre backs.

    Doesn’t Azpilicueta play in the chavs’ back three and wasn’t Dier playing in the back three for the spuds?

    Surely the left and right sides of the back three are halfway between centre backs and full backs.

  100. mickydidit89 says:

    Think of the wider ones as cb’s with motorcycles

  101. Red Arnie says:

    just managed to get through comments. some top feelings there, special mention MrZ and GiE. 🙂

  102. Red Arnie says:

    not to mention the cb’s with motorcycles. 🙂

  103. mickydidit89 says:

    That is quite superb

  104. Zee says:

    Thanx, LB @ 1:02 pm 😀

    One of the reasons I always liked your post-match report was because you were actually at the games, and that brings much more perspective than watching a TV screen with a limited horizon.

    Hope when you are ready you will pick up your quill again – OK, then – that you will tap away at your keyboard – has to be the best way of getting a proper fan’s eye view.

  105. chas mobile says:

  106. GunnerN5 says:

    A typical act of class by Arsenal FC.

  107. GunnerN5 says:

    Some great comments today, sorry I missed it all but I’ve been very busy.

  108. Zee says:


    I do not know if anyone has mentioned that your team prediction was damned good!

    Apart from Özil the rest of the team was spot on. For the record, Elneny played in midfield and Rambo moved to Mesut’s position, that was the only change.

    Well done. You are too modest! 😀

  109. chas says:

  110. GunnerN5 says:

    Hi Zee, I get lucky sometimes.

  111. GunnerN5 says:


    The players are able to play in so many different positions that selecting a team is a) choosing the right players and b) putting them in the selected positions – is way beyond my capabilities.

  112. LB says:

    Not going to happen again I am afraid Mr Z

  113. chas says:

  114. Eddie says:

    @6:43 all the animals are waiting for their pints, except for the pug waiting for chicken nuggets

  115. chas says:


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